We’ve all been there at some point: tossing and turning throughout the late night in hopes of finding a comfortable position to fall asleep, all the while getting more anxious and frustrated as the minutes on the clock slowly inch toward the time where your alarm will go off.
While there are many reasons for a lack of quality sleep, there are also several natural and easy ways to relax your mind and body for a restful slumber. One such effective course of action? Giving yourself – or having a partner give you – an orgasm.
“Generally, an orgasm helps one to relax and relieve stress, while the refractory period post-orgasm allows for the feeling of release and a lull into a more restful state,” explains Andrea Tan, a Singapore-based certified sexual wellness and relationship coach. “An orgasm can help regulate the nervous system, release tension, and manage our mood levels – all necessary elements for a good night’s sleep.”
Gemma Fisk, a certified infant and adult sleep consultant, concurs. “After we orgasm, our brain releases serotonin, which encourages a feeling of relaxation that helps us to switch off before bed. Serotonin is a cortisol killer,” she explains. “Cortisol is a stress hormone that typically rises throughout the day, especially if we have been up against stressful situations.”
Reducing your cortisol level before bed is important to help prevent a vicious cycle of anxiety and insomnia, says Gemma. “If we repeatedly put ourselves to bed whilst feeling stressed and occupied by negative thoughts, it conditions our brains to believe that the bedroom is a stressful place and can lead to sleep issues such as chronic insomnia,” she warns.
The sleep consultant, who firmly believes in a holistic and science-based approach to help adults and children sleep better, is collaborating with global pleasure brand We-Vibe to promote a positive relationship between sleep and sex. “Sex and sleep go hand in hand and if we can work to support one, the other will flourish. If they are neglected, it can be easy to spiral into a highly stressed zone which feels difficult to come out of.”
Here, Gemma and Andrea candidly share more about how orgasms can help reduce stress levels for better sleep, why sleep advice columns seldom mention sex/orgasms as a method, and more.